Over the past month I’ve been trying out PHISM, a pre-workout pill from Savin Nutrition. For those who like pre-workout beverages for their benefits, but who are looking for a change of pace, read on. PHISM might be what you’re looking for.
When it comes to pre-workout formulas I have two major gripes. First, most pre-workout formulas are drinks and they have some kind of sweetener in them. It’s either sugar, which I don’t usually want (no, not even pre-workout), or an artificial sweetener, which I don’t want either.
Second, many pre-workouts are only useful because of their caffeine content. They may have other ingredients, but those ingredients probably don’t do much, or are just caffeine disguised by a different name, like guarana. Sure your pre-workout drink might have B-vitamins in it, but is getting more really going to give you more energy if the rest of your diet is already dialed in?
Don’t get me wrong, PHISM contains both caffeine (labeled as “coffee bean extract”) and B-vitamins, and those are fine things to have in your pre-workout formula. Nevertheless, it still stands apart from other pre-workout drinks for a few reasons. First, PHISM is a capsule, not a drink, and it contains no sweeteners at all. It also goes beyond the standard throwaway ingredients. Besides B6, B12, and caffeine, PHISM has what Savin Nutrition calls an AMRAP Matrix, which they intend to be ideally suited for CrossFit and other intense methods of exercise.
The AMRAP Matrix includes the following substances:
- DMG: An amino acid that may stimulate the immune system and possibly provide other athletic benefits.
- Quercetin: A flavonoid (a kind of plant pigment) that has anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. It may also help breathing.
- N-Acetyl Tyrosine: An amino acid that plays a role in you reward system and is also a precursor to the stimulatory catecholamines (e.g. adrenaline).
- N-Methyl Tyramine: A substance that stimulates the release of the above-mentioned catecholamines.
- Rutaecarpine: An herb that may improve blood flow.
For me, PHISM functioned well as a pre-workout formula. Even more notably, however, I happened to also be writing after taking it, and noticed that Savin Nutrition’s boasts of better concentration seemed to prove true. In other words, not only did PHISM work to give me workout energy, but I could exercise my mind better as well, over and above taking caffeine alone. This is a huge bonus.
My only issue with an otherwise great product is that the website has a few iffy parts that I encountered. Namely, their site claims that PHISM has less caffeine than a small coffee, which doesn’t seem to be true. PHISM has 186mg of coffee bean extract which, according to their Amazon page, translates to 186mg of caffeine. Most sources would have a small black coffee at much less than that. Also, on the site, the label is printed incorrectly, listing B6 twice (instead of B12, which is listed correctly on the actual bottle). It also spells cyanocobalamin wrong.
These above issues might sound trivial, but a company’s website is how they interact with their consumers, so the information should be correct. Even worse, with other supplement companies getting into trouble all the time with labels that make false claims and harmful ingredients, poor labels make me suspicious.
The product itself, however, is excellent. If you’re looking for an alternative per-workout formula, check out PHISM, and see if you like it too.
Phism is available for $37.99 at Amazon.com.